This week, HP announced a new 14-inch machine running Google’s Chrome OS: the HP Chromebook x360 14. That’s not to be confused with the 14-inch HP x360 that runs Windows or last year’s HP Chromebook x360 11.
HP says this is its thinnest Chromebook ever, at just 16mm. The entry-level configuration ships equipped with an eighth-generation Core i3 CPU, but a Core i5 option will also be available.
Like a lot of laptops at this price point, the x360 14 is a convertible—interesting, given that Google’s own flagship new Chrome OS device announced at almost the same time is a tablet.
HP is going for that “premium” vibe with this one, talking up the materials in its press releasing and pricing it starting at $600. That’s right at the price point that Ars’ own Peter Bright opined makes Chromebooks a real threat to Microsoft. As students who were introduced to Chromebooks in school grow up, they might find themselves in possession of the funds to purchase something a little nicer than the as-cheap-as-possible machines they used in classrooms before—and if companies like HP provide, then they might be inclined to stay in that ecosystem instead of switching to Windows.
HP has been a reliable source of attractive Chromebooks lately; Ars was impressed by Chromebook x2. The x2 made the prospect of Chrome OS as a primary platform for getting work done seem viable our reviewer. If you’re not feeling that device’s detachable approach and prefer a convertible, the x360 looks like a solid entry in a crowded category in this price range. It’s certainly more practical for more users than the education-oriented 11-inch device that HP shipped last year.